Wednesday, June 22, 2016

wedding season... outfit post

floral blouse - thrifted
pale blue skirt - ross
brown sandals - walmart
butterfly earrings - made by me

Oh my, this last weekend was fun!
Between a friend's lovely wedding and Andrew celebrating his first *Happy* Father's Day, there wasn't a dull moment!

I wore this outfit to the wedding and, I must say, this skirt is probably my very favorite of any I own currently!  It is SUPER soft.  I adore the color.  And the fairy-tale feel the uneven hem brings makes it absolutely perfect.  I have been wearing my favorite gray maxi skirt SO much since having Rennie and it has been wonderful having another option that is every bit as comfortable!
My blouse is a tried-and-true I found several years ago which, thankfully, still fits!

For my hair, I just pony-tailed it at the top of my head, curled it in four large sections, then pulled it down and clipped back the front.  I love that hair-curling method as it is the quickest I have found and, now that my hair is growing out again, works really well!

What is your favorite way to curl your hair?  Do you have a favorite skirt (or clothing item in general)?


Thursday, June 16, 2016

to the moon and back... outfit post

"to the moon and back" gray top  -  gift from my mom, via thrift store
blue paisley palazzo pants  -  thrift store
jeweled flower earrings  -  meijer

also featured...
mirror  -  walmart!
rennie  -  God!... with assistance from Andrew and me  *wink!*

Finally!  An outfit post!

It has been months since I have grabbed a camera to capture what I'm wearing.  There are a few reasons for that... the biggest ones being I'd much rather take pictures of my adorable baby and another being it takes too much time to set up a tripod, play around with a timer, and try to get posed shots while chasing a toddling child.

So, I have finally invested in a full-length mirror for easy, phone-or-camera-in-hand selfies.  Hopefully this will lead to more frequent posts of a clothing nature.  I will still attempt to get more artistic pictures taken on occasion, but am hoping this will do for most posts. 

My assemble today includes a wondrously flowy pair of palazzo pants my sister spotted in a thrift store for me!  They had one tiny tear, which was easily fixed, and are now one of my go-to pairs of stylish-yet-comfy pants!  I rarely wear jeans (pants or shorts) these days, simply because since being pregnant my stomach is extremely tender to the kind of pressure non elastic-waist pants cause.  Upon asking my mom if this was normal, I was informed that she hasn't liked the feel the jeans since having kids either.  Oh, the things you never even thought about before having a baby!

Also in this outfit is my new favorite tshirt!!!  Since I was little, the expression "I love you to the moon and back" has been used many times in my family.  My mom and I even did a canvas-art project for my house with the saying (shown in this post).  So when this shirt was discovered at a thrift store, it was just meant to be!

I am not wearing any shoes in these pictures since I'm not planning on going out, but a cute pair of sandals would be the perfect touch to complete this outfit.

My hairstyle is air-dried and clipped off my face.  My makeup is light foundation, touch of blush, mascara, lipgloss, and a bit of filling in of the eyebrows (which is the most I usually do on casual days, if I wear any at all!).

It is amazing how much my mindset towards clothing/fashion has altered since becoming a mother.  Maybe it is just that I don't have as much time for me... maybe it is being a little limited because of breastfeeding... or maybe the simple fact that my priorities have changed.

I used to be so obsessed with looking "feminine" all of the time, even at home.  I felt like a failure to my gender if I went a day without doing my hair/face or donning a lace blouse.  
Nowadays function is a lot more important to me than fashion... and the guilt I felt at this transition was crippling.
After all, so many mommy-bloggers look flawlessly dolled up; makeup perfect, hair curled and teased and who-knows-what-else, clothes unstained and un-stretched by tiny, pulling hands.  What was wrong with me?  How could my daughter ever have a healthy view of herself if her mom couldn't even make herself wear a pair of nice jeans at home?  What about my husband?  How could he think I still loved him if I didn't make the effort to look perfect when he came home from work?  What about my own blog?  Are people *really* going to want to see pictures of me with my two-minute hairstyle and casual clothes (plus my body that hasn't bounced back into pre-pregnancy outfits like I'd hoped)?

And then the light came on.  Not in one moment... more like a couple months of moments.  Moments like my husband telling me that he never thinks twice about my tshirt-instead-of-blouse dress code and that he thinks I look perfect without makeup.  Like my mom asking me what I remember her wearing when I was tiny.  Like coming to the truth about who I am and what matters about me.

If you look at pictures from my mom's younger, raising-tiny-people days, she is rarely wearing makeup or dress clothes.   And, honestly, without looking at pictures, I couldn't have told you what she wore as I was growing up.  What I remember is her amazing smile, her creativity, her lovely singing, and how perfectly beautiful she always was to me.  And she is one of the people I am the most secure around.  I don't have to impress her.  I know that she sees what really matters.
What better gift can I give my own daughter than knowing her value and beauty, regardless of how "done up" she is?

The biggest "light bulb" moment has been most recently, as I considered *who* I am and to what I am called.

I am not called to fashion.  I am not called to makeup.  I am not called to never wearing loose blouses AND pants in the same outfit (oh, horrors!).  I am not called to skinny.  I am not even called to dressing perfectly "feminine" (though, seriously, just being a woman makes me feminine... so why am I feeling the need to constantly prove it?).

I *am* called to Christ.  I am called to kindness.  I am called to sincerity.  I am called to loving my husband.  I am called to purity.  I am called to truth.  I am called to freedom.

And, more recently, I am called to motherhood.  This means putting someone else before me every. single. moment.  This means showing my daughter that my worth (and, as she will learn through my example, HER worth) isn't in the outward appearance, whether it is clothes, weight, makeup, YOU NAME IT.  
Do I still enjoy the makeup and the hairstyles and the perfectly-adorable outfits?  Oh yes.  Do I still want to have a healthy body?  Of course.
But those things aren't what make "Rachel".  They are just add-ons.  I hope that is what I can pass on to my daughter: true confidence, because of who she is and to what she is called.
More importantly:  Whose she is and to Whom she is called.

Let that be my encouragement to you today as well.


Wednesday, June 8, 2016

mamabird life {five}

rennie walk more and more.  she has made it across the room several times now!

water and sunshine lingering from when we enjoyed our little pool earlier.

to Rennie playing and the air conditioner kicking on quite often.

after darkness comes light.

to wear my shorts around the house (it is over 100 degrees most days here). 
 also a new system of grocery shopping to help us save money!

more family time.  Andrew's work hours are really hard right now.

that I had more arms/hands. two just aren't enough when you are holding a baby, sipping coffee, AND attempting to read a book.

that I could do without summer this year.  and how amazing music is!

at my daughter's hilarious cuteness.  amidst the heavy and hard, she is such a joy!

a swimsuit (boy, was that an adventure!  I still haven't found one I would deem modest enough for public use without a cover.  the one I found will do very nicely for our little pool out back though.). 
 summer clothes for Rennie (and a few things for myself as this is my first summer since having a baby and much of my old wardrobe doesn't fit yet).

phantom of the opera.  shrek the musical. and newsies!

mostly casual clothes, soft and flowy!  i'm really hoping to start doing more outfit posts in the future to show off my mom-style!  ;-)

a little sad most days, if I'm being honest.  the days are long right now with how much Andrew has to work.  looking forward to better days.

the books of bayern by shannon hale (just finished book three, river secrets). 

my daughter walking with ease rather soon and baby-proofing more and more of the house!!!

the time I DO have with my two favorite people.  ice cream.  my daughter's laugh!